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Paying tribute to our ‘Nanays

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Teodoro P. Estacio

Teodoro P. Estacio

On the 15th anniversary of the founding of ASA Foundation – a micro-finance NGO, the organizers departed from the usual recognition program and, instead, paid tribute to their unsung heroes – the “Nanays” (mothers), the core of their clients. They recognized them for their continued efforts to save, the big part of ASA Foundation capital build-up program. They recognized these women for their efforts to establish not only a livelihood for their family but also social enterprises that would serve as their vehicles to develop and strengthen their community.

They religiously attend weekly meetings to learn new ways not only to develop themselves and their families but also their community at large.
In these meetings they update their financial obligations to the organization.

The Nanays were also credited for assisting ASA Foundation with numerous social outreach program of the NGO. They were there, together with the staff and officers of the NGO without media and fanfare when major tragedies struck as in the Yolanda aftermath and the devastation brought about by typhoons Ompong, Sendong and Peping and earthquakes in Bicol. They brought help to the victims of the Zamboanga and the Marawi siege.

They were there helping the Foundation conduct its regular medical missions including dental health, immunization, routine medical examination of the most impoverished members of the community as well as child feeding programs.The out of school youth are also beneficiary of their effortsas there are some 5,700 plus scholars both in college and TESDA accredited courses.

Under the leadership of a former UN Consultant Mr. Kamrul Tafalder, currently now the CEO and president, the Foundation has a network of 1,150 branches as of end of 2018.This nationwide micro-finance foundation covers about 82 provinces serving over a million borrowers in 25,239 barangays . As of year in review, they have disbursed more than P190.0 billion in micro-loans since it was founded way back in July, 2004.

To administer its current program of activities, it has employed more than 8,000 staff, 6,000 of whom act as micro-finance officers who not only promote the foundation’s services among the poorest of the poor but also ensure that the loans extended are put into proper use, repayment agreements are efficiently fulfilled while savings generation continues. To date, the foundation is proud to report a 94.5% collection efficiency for every loan extended to the community.

Beyond providing productive loans, the Foundation has partnered with Waters.org in their program of providing potable drinking waters in some parts of the country.

They are working with Habitat for Humanity for their housing programs and Coca-Cola Philippines for the bookkeeping class of their member sari-sari store owners. Other institutions that have continued to support ASA Foundation is PLDT Smart and PBSP.

The Nanays today are proud owners of small and medium enterprises that provide employment opportunities to their community. Indigenous tribes have converted to become social enterprises producing and marketing their own native products. Loans obtained from the Foundation do not go to the traditional usage of credit but on new and diversified SME projects.

Despite challenging times from building up capital to surviving peace and order challenges in most of their area of operations ASA Foundation is optimistic about its future operations. Thanks to our Nanays.

tedestacio@yahoo.com

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